LQ's Mummy's Mask
Footprints of Rovagug
Osirion’s western deserts, encompassing a region roughly bound between the Barrier Wall Mountains, the Junira, and the Crook, are largely free of windblown sand. While just as parched as the majority of western Osirion, the dunes give way to hundreds of square miles of desolate, rocky terrain. More than just the foothills to the Barrier Wall, this region, known widely as the Footprints of Rovagug, is dotted by several regions of hot springs—like mocking, mirror counterparts to desert oases—and Osirion’s only volcanoes: Sokar’s Boil and Asuulek’s Mouth.
Despite the daunting terrain, Osirian nobles frequent the region’s springs in the belief that bathing in their waters carries a rejuvenating and healing effect.
The Glazen Sheet
Between the city of Shiman-Sekh and the western border with Thuvia as defined by the Junira River, the desert’s characteristics change and the region grows more and more parched and desolate. Slowly the sand dunes of the western desert give way to a region of limestone flats broken in their uniformity only by the pockmarks of dry salt lakes and glittering ribbons of ancient riverbeds now choked by a rime of salt and fine gypsum dust. As inimical to most life as it is, even for creatures adapted to the desert, the landscape is telling about Osirion’s past climate in that it suggests the entire area was once covered with water.
The River Sphinx
Civilization would never have risen beyond the scope of wandering tribes and small communities sheltered around the rare desert oases if not for the mighty River Sphinx. The greatest of Osirion’s cities rise up along its banks, with only a few others beyond the river owing their existence to the waters of desert aquifers and oases, and none of those as large as the urban children of the Sphinx or its twin sources in the nation’s south and west, the Crook and the Asp. The majority of Osirion’s population lives on or near its banks, using it as a source of drinking water and a system of transit as well as relying on its seasonal flooding to enrich the soil of their fields.
Slave Trenches of Hakotep
Between the Barrier Mountains and the headwaters of the Crook stands a network of massive, heavily eroded earthworks constructed by the otherwise unknown Pharaoh Hakotep I. The so-called slave trenches themselves are just as mysterious as their namesake builder, running in odd geometric arrangements of mounds and furrows across 17 square miles of rocky desert. Broken obelisks dot the mounds between the trenches at irregular intervals like withered fingers reaching up from the meandering earthworks, while the sand-choked trenches lie filled with the bleached, broken, and pockmarked bones of tens of thousands of slave laborers.
This vast expanse of uncharted desert is among the least hospitable regions of the Osirian Desert, and Osirion on the whole. Few caravans venture into the dunes, for the girtablilus, maftets, and drakes that call the region home are vicious, and there is little on the other side worth flirting with their wrath.